With the Fire on High
With her daughter to care for and her abuela to help support, high school senior Emoni Santiago has to make the tough decisions, and do what must be done. The one place she can let her responsibilities go is in the kitchen, where she adds a little something magical to everything she cooks, turning her food into straight-up goodness. Still, she knows she doesn’t have enough time for her school’s new culinary arts class, doesn’t have the money for the class’s trip to Spain — and shouldn’t still be dreaming of someday working in a real kitchen. But even with all the rules she has for her life — and all the rules everyone expects her to play by — once Emoni starts cooking, her only real choice is to let her talent break free.

With the Fire on High Details

TitleWith the Fire on High
Author
ReleaseMay 7th, 2019
PublisherHarperTeen
ISBN-139780062662859
Rating
GenreYoung Adult, Contemporary, Fiction

With the Fire on High Review

  • شيماء ✨
    January 1, 1970
    *stretches* man isn't it a nice day to just *breathes deeply* pre-order this book because the girl on the cover is pretty as fuck and I'm gay
  • Hailey (Hailey in Bookland)
    January 1, 1970
    *ARC provided in exchange for an honest review by Harper Collins Frenzy. Thank you!*This was such a great read. So rich and vibrant, I felt like I could smell and taste each dish that Emoni made. She was an easy to character to love and root for and I enjoyed watching her journey throughout her senior year as a teen mom struggling to put herself first for once. Overall, I think this book was just as beautiful as the cover is (and that's pretty damn beautiful.)
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  • (Bern) Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas
    January 1, 1970
    "The world is a turntable that never stops spinning; as humans we merely choose the tracks we want to sit out and the ones that inspire us to dance." Elizabeth Acevedo has done it again! This sophomore novel is vastly different from Poet X, yet it is equally filled with boriqua pride, strong familial love and characters that ooze diversity. And that cover - breathtakingly gorgeous! Emoni is a (part Puerto Rican, part Black) teenage mom who was raised by her 'Buela (grandmother) after the death "The world is a turntable that never stops spinning; as humans we merely choose the tracks we want to sit out and the ones that inspire us to dance." Elizabeth Acevedo has done it again! This sophomore novel is vastly different from Poet X, yet it is equally filled with boriqua pride, strong familial love and characters that ooze diversity. And that cover - breathtakingly gorgeous! Emoni is a (part Puerto Rican, part Black) teenage mom who was raised by her 'Buela (grandmother) after the death of her mother in childbirth. How I adored her abuela and their strong relationship! Emoni's love and devotion for her daughter was everything. She wants so much for Emma and is willing to work hard and do whatever it takes to make something of herself. Emoni has magic hands when it comes to cooking. Her food literally evokes physical emotion in all who eat it as she essentially pours a bit of herself into every dish she makes. This dash of magical realism woven into the story was perfection. I thoroughly enjoyed the recipes and the emails to her aunt about food sprinkled throughout. Food plays as important a role in the story as poetry did in Poet X. Emoni struggling to find her way and working towards realizing her dreams was front and center here. It never took a back seat to the love story woven in which I absolutely appreciated. There were many strong secondary characters that impacted Emoni's life and added richness to the story. Her relationship with her best friend reminded me so much of my own that I couldn't help but smile each time they were together. A lot happens in this book and I happily followed along with Emoni's life with every turn of the page. The short chapters made it feel hard to put the book aside - I kept thinking "just one more chapter" and found myself done before I was ready to let go. Thank you to Elizabeth Acevedo, Harper Teen and Edelweiss for the opportunity to read and review this emotional and empowering story.
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  • destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]
    January 1, 1970
    This is literally one of the most stunning covers I've ever seen. Wow.
  • Tucker
    January 1, 1970
    LATINO REP!!! YAYYY! I'M 50% LATINO. But you could never tell. I'm as pale as a naked banana 🍌 <
  • Melanie
    January 1, 1970
    Blog | Instagram | Twitter | Tumblr | Youtube | Twitch
  • Taylor
    January 1, 1970
    Okay, first of all: this cover is GORGEOUS.Second: The premise sounds bomb af and I can't wait to read this!!
  • Rincey
    January 1, 1970
    A worthy follow up to an amazing debut
  • Emily May
    January 1, 1970
    ARC provided in exchange for honest review 🍒
  • Diana
    January 1, 1970
    Before I began reviewing this book in depth, I have to begin saying that I ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT. Plot, characters, all of it was superb.I loved how the writter develops the narrative. You have small-ish chapters that make it easy to move from one to another, and the lecture grips you and doesn't let you go. You promise yourself just another chapter, 'cause they are short, right? But you can't put down this book, is that good. The narrative flourishes, is easy to read and is really well constructe Before I began reviewing this book in depth, I have to begin saying that I ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT. Plot, characters, all of it was superb.I loved how the writter develops the narrative. You have small-ish chapters that make it easy to move from one to another, and the lecture grips you and doesn't let you go. You promise yourself just another chapter, 'cause they are short, right? But you can't put down this book, is that good. The narrative flourishes, is easy to read and is really well constructed. Also, I loved how all the characters have they own way of talking, and it reflects on the writing. For instance, 'Buela uses a lot of spanish words, honoring her Puerto Rican ancestry.Talking about that, I have to say that I love a book like this one, where the main character is a mixed black woman, and all her relatives and/or friends are also mixed or black. We need more diverse books, representation matters, and I do love reading books where the main character isn't white. I also enjoy a lot all of the different aspects having people of color add to a book: different ways of talking, thinking, ways to see things... It makes you put yourself on other people's shoes and see how they see the world and how they are affected by people and their reactions (there is a chapter on the book where Emoni, the main character, reflects about it on a bus, how people judge people differently depending on them being white or black).I really like that a book makes me think, and makes me realise or see things I haven't given much thought before, or even if I had, I needed to see the prespective, you know?The plot of the book follows the life of Emori, a single mom, barely 18, who has to care for her little one and lives with her grandma. She has been raised by her, and we are gonna see the stranded relationship she has with her father and why things are as they are.We are going to meet her bestfriend in the whole world, and appreciate the power of women's sorority.And we also are going to met the new kid on the hood, who is going to be a turning point for Emori and her way to relate to the male species, after her first boyfriend left her pregnant and sort of was an ass (my words, not hers... exactly). And talking about relation ships, I loved the fact that the author isn't afraid of telling girls they can follow their own pace, they can voice what they want out of a relation, share their thoughts and fears with the other person and also ask for time when they need it, let it be before comitting to a relationship or having sex.For all of this, I just loved this book. Is so different to anything else, and so full of uniqueness that I just couldn't put it down.
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  • Stephanie Gillespie
    January 1, 1970
    ARC received by Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review."Sometimes focusing on what you can control is the only way to lessen the pang in your chest when you think about the things you can’t."The first time I saw the cover of this book I fell in love, it is so gorgeous!! This book means so much to me! This story was very empowering. Emoni was such a strong character and full of passion. Also the amount of representation in the book was excellent. Emoni is part Puerto-Rican and Black and a  te ARC received by Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review."Sometimes focusing on what you can control is the only way to lessen the pang in your chest when you think about the things you can’t."The first time I saw the cover of this book I fell in love, it is so gorgeous!! This book means so much to me! This story was very empowering. Emoni was such a strong character and full of passion. Also the amount of representation in the book was excellent. Emoni is part Puerto-Rican and Black and a  teenage mother, there is also a lesbian side character.Emoni is told that she has a magic touch when it comes to cooking. She takes a recipe and makes her her own by adding spices she believes will enhance the flavors. I felt such a deep connection to Emoni, she is a badass single teen mom, with a beautiful little girl. Many of you probably don't know that I had my son Noah when I was 17.  I understand her struggles, she wants to provide for her daughter. To make the right decisions so that there future will be secure. I have never felt such a connection with a character before, I cried so many tears throughout this book.When Emoni discovers she has a chance to take a culinary cooking class as an elective in school. She cannot decide if it's the right choice to take the class,they will also be going on a trip to Spain at the end of the semester. She already has to keep up with school work, and she works part time to help cover the cost of the baby, plus actually taking care of the baby. Emoni has a lot on her plate. She dreams of becoming a chef and someday working in a restaurant. This book could have been full of stereotypes about teen mother's, but it wasn't. It was a beautiful story, about a girl despite her circumstances goes after her dream. Oh my Goodness, I'm crying again just typing this review." I want to be able to take care of my own and the only thing I would want to study is culinary arts, but why try to learn that in a school when I could learn it in a real restaurant where I’m making money instead of spending it?”" The side character's were also an amazing addition to the story, Emoni's best friend is her rock. She has been there for her all through her pregnancy and remained after the baby was born. She is also a lesbian and has the cutest relationship!The chapters are also really short which I loved. The start of new sections also has little recopies which I thought was a nice touch.It was next to impossible to put down With the Heat on High.Overall, I would strongly recommend this book.
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  • Vicky Who Reads
    January 1, 1970
    I expected nothing less than greatness from Elizabeth Acevedo
  • Elise (TheBookishActress)
    January 1, 1970
    I always love stories about young women growing their ambition and everything, but also, the cover of this is too beautiful i'm not fucking able to process it
  • Malanie
    January 1, 1970
    "My father is Puerto Rican, and he's darker than my mom was, and her whole family is straight-from-the-Carolina's Black. And her hair was just as curly as mine. Not all Black women, or Latinas, look the same." I would like it to be known that Emoni is a badass teen parent + such a loving/hard-working mother to her smol tiny daughter Emma. Emoni feels SO REAL, from her dialogue to the way she confronts struggles.I loved her + loved every time she cooked something delicious. I want Emoni to coo "My father is Puerto Rican, and he's darker than my mom was, and her whole family is straight-from-the-Carolina's Black. And her hair was just as curly as mine. Not all Black women, or Latinas, look the same." I would like it to be known that Emoni is a badass teen parent + such a loving/hard-working mother to her smol tiny daughter Emma. Emoni feels SO REAL, from her dialogue to the way she confronts struggles.I loved her + loved every time she cooked something delicious. I want Emoni to cook for me, I would spend my life savings at her future restaurant. It's pretty much impossible for me to not love a passionate character. If a character is *really* obsessed without something, I automatically respect + adore them. && Emoni is obsessed with her daughter + cooking, and I all added up to SO MUCH OBSESSION ON MY PART.The main problem I had with this book was that the romance felt unnecessary. I wish we could have focused more on the MC + her lesbian best friend + the MC's struggles with life. I wanted to put this on my "no romance" shelf with so much energy. Also, the main character's ex-boyfriend /the father of her child was controlling/possessive/disrespectful. This is a huge anxiety trigger for me because I've dealt with controlling/frightening boys in the past and reading about relationships like this is hard to go through. But, objectively it was handled well c: There are also little recipes throughout the book which I found SO COOL????? I'm usually too busy spiraling into existential dread to cook, but I also really love recipes & food which Emoni shares extensively. I really loved this + the way Emoni free styles everything. Which is basically everything I cannot do, I usually follow recipes step by step with hidden terror that I'm going to screw everything up. lololollllllllOverall, this was an excellent book with a cover my gay heart enjoys staring at. ARC provided by publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.| 💜TWITTER💜 |💜 BOOKSTAGRAM💜 |💜 BLOG 💜|
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  • Mel Anie (finals - 2months)
    January 1, 1970
    This ARC was provided via Edelweiss. Thank you HarperTeen! This book is as delicious as it's cover. I've had a great time reading it. It was cute, funny and inspirational. It also taught me a lot about history of Puerto Rico and its people. It was awesome.Emoni, the main character of this book, is a young woman with a great culinary skills. Reading her thoughts I couldn't help but feel motivated by her to do better. To chase my dreams just like she did, even if it means to fight against all the This ARC was provided via Edelweiss. Thank you HarperTeen! This book is as delicious as it's cover. I've had a great time reading it. It was cute, funny and inspirational. It also taught me a lot about history of Puerto Rico and its people. It was awesome.Emoni, the main character of this book, is a young woman with a great culinary skills. Reading her thoughts I couldn't help but feel motivated by her to do better. To chase my dreams just like she did, even if it means to fight against all the odds of life. And let me tell you, her life is nowhere near easy, but does it matter in a long run? Guess not.Recommendable for anyone looking for an easy, cute and motivational book. Fans of The Poet X and To All The Boys I Loved Before would love it!
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  • Elke
    January 1, 1970
    can we all take a moment to appreciate this cover and also how gorgeous it looks next to the cover from the poet x i mean -a magical realism book with prose and a teen mom and her dreams and cooking by the ultimate queen Acevedo???! im ready for my new fave
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  • Dahlia
    January 1, 1970
    Such a good ode to both literal and emotional nourishment.
  • anna (readingpeaches)
    January 1, 1970
    I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.This review is also posted on my blog.I have to be honest. Half the reason I wanted to read With the Fire on High is that Acevedo is a poet. If you know me at all, you’re probably aware how much I love poetry. So a chance to see how a person who usually works with a totally different set of rules translates their thoughts into prose? I couldn’t pass it up.And it’s obvious from the very first pages that the author is also a p I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.This review is also posted on my blog.I have to be honest. Half the reason I wanted to read With the Fire on High is that Acevedo is a poet. If you know me at all, you’re probably aware how much I love poetry. So a chance to see how a person who usually works with a totally different set of rules translates their thoughts into prose? I couldn’t pass it up.And it’s obvious from the very first pages that the author is also a poet. The beauty with which With the Fire On High is written! The unassuming metaphors, the word choices, the rhythm of sentences itself! I would even say that the length of chapters has something of a poem to it, being short enough just to convey a feeling. Acevedo's poetic delicacy shines through every line and it feels a little bit like a gift. (It probably feels like eating Emoni’s cooking feels.)This is the story of Emoni who isn’t even eighteen yet at the start of it, but she already experienced more than half of us. She’s mixed race - Afro-Puerto Rican on her dad’s side and Black on her mom’s and that heritage doesn’t make it easy to find her place in the world. She was raised by her grandmother because her mom died in childbirth and her father is only good for a visit once every few months. Emoni also has a daughter, who’s already two years old.But those are all aspects of her life she’s known; sure, she still didn’t exactly figure out how to handle them all, but it’s an ongoing fight. What’s new is her struggle to accept that she actually can be a little bit selfish, even though she’s a mother, even though her grandmother is old & tired, even though the world doesn’t want to hear her opinions. And this is what With the Fire On High is truly about - a journey to self-love.That's what I loved so much about it. Because even with such a wonderful set of secondary characters, all of whom are incredibly well fleshed out, this is - and make no mistake about it - an Emoni story. She's the star of it, she's right at the center and even  the romance doesn't outshine her, like it often happens in contemporary novels. I actually adored the love arc, with how simple & not overwhelming it was, but mostly - how every single second of it happened on Emoni's terms.And all these things going on in Emoni's life? The rep doesn't actually end there and it's another aspect of this book that feels like someone feeding you a homemade dish with a dash of magic. Because seeing yourself in a story? Nothing better than that! And here we have a best friend who's an out lesbian in a committed relationship (who doesn't find Idris Elba attractive and oh boy, do I relate to that!). We have whole working-class neighborhoods and we touch upon gentrification more than once. We even have a Polish side character! Granted, he doesn't say much, but his last name is Jagoda which translates to blueberry and personally? I think that's perfect for this story.Most importantly, none of those things (and I still didn't list everything) feel like an addition made just so that the book is "politically correct" or whatever. Rather - the book acknowledges we live in a diverse world and that it exactly what it tries to portrait. With the Fire On High  is a book that will make you hungry: for food, for good & loyal friends, for a big family, for adventure, for passion, for love. All of it is packed in those four hundred pages, with some cinnamon and beautiful writing sprinkled on top. Truly a summery gem you do not wanna miss out on. Blog | Twitter | Instagram | Bloglovin | Reads Rainbow
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  • Kelly
    January 1, 1970
    One of my favorite storylines in YA is the one where, upon reaching senior year, the main character isn't sure what it is they want to do after graduation. Acevedo's sophomore effort reminded me quite a bit of Finding Yvonne, which isn't a bad thing at all.Emoni's been raising her daughter and living with her abuela all through high school. Her daughter's father is not entirely out of the picture, but he's also not really in it. It's senior year and Emoni is able to take a culinary arts class at One of my favorite storylines in YA is the one where, upon reaching senior year, the main character isn't sure what it is they want to do after graduation. Acevedo's sophomore effort reminded me quite a bit of Finding Yvonne, which isn't a bad thing at all.Emoni's been raising her daughter and living with her abuela all through high school. Her daughter's father is not entirely out of the picture, but he's also not really in it. It's senior year and Emoni is able to take a culinary arts class at her school. She's always loved to cook, and this could open up a ton of doors for her, especially if she can find a way to pay for the class's one-week immersion trip to Spain. But she and the teacher butt heads and it looks like the whole class will be a loss, until Emoni steps back and plays the class by the teacher's rules. It ultimately ends up helping her find her own way with food and cooking and discovering how to make a future in the industry.Engaging and written with lovely prose, I wouldn't mind trying Emoni's meals any time. I loved how much was here about growing up, about making due with what you've got, and about how, no matter the circumstances, some things really can and do work out. There's a budding romance in here between Emoni and a new student to her Philly school which was lovely, but I found Emoni's relationship with best friend Angelica (who is queer) to be really fabulous. I also love how close Emoni is to her abuela and how much her abuela has a whole life of her own that Emoni isn't privy to until the end.
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  • Dayla
    January 1, 1970
    Review first appeared on my blog here.4.5/5 StarsI received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.The first time I saw the cover of With the Fire On High by Elizabeth Acevedo I fell in love. I’ve been blogging about books for years and never has a cover actually made me do a double-take. What worried me, however, was if the story would match the beautiful cover. And oh, did it ever. The bright colours, lush illustrations of fruits, and the strong profile of a confident mixed Review first appeared on my blog here.4.5/5 StarsI received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.The first time I saw the cover of With the Fire On High by Elizabeth Acevedo I fell in love. I’ve been blogging about books for years and never has a cover actually made me do a double-take. What worried me, however, was if the story would match the beautiful cover. And oh, did it ever. The bright colours, lush illustrations of fruits, and the strong profile of a confident mixed woman more than reflected the quality of the story. Also, oh man, that Latinx representation! I am in LOVE with the representation! It wasn’t overwhelming, or just used as a plot device. This is the kind of book I’ve been waiting for. The Spanish dialogue was correct, the religion wasn’t used as a plot device, and Emoni’s heritage wasn’t used as a way to mark her as “different” from everyone else. She just was who she was. Thank you, Elizabeth Acevedo!Emoni Santiago has a magic touch when it comes to cooking. Somehow, she always knows just what to add to a recipe to make it memorable and special enough to feel like magic. But being a single teen mom makes life more complicated for Emoni. Her daughter is her life, but she knows she needs to do something more than just provide for her. She wants to be a chef someday and for that to happen, Emoni needs to find the time to take the new culinary class in her high school. Through life lessons that teach her that she’s not as alone as she thinks (besides her abuela, who is a constant in her life), surprising new friendships, and cooking adventures she never expected, Emoni will learn that even though dreams may seem impossible, it’s worth the fight and the hope to want better for your life. With the Fire On High has a special essence to it that immediately drew me in. Emoni is a single mother who has so many things against her. If someone were to look her way, they would think she wouldn’t succeed in life because of her circumstances. This could have easily become a story about the stereotypes following young mothers, but Acevedo instead introduces a story about a girl who has people rooting for her. I remember being particularly touched by a chapter where a teacher basically tells her that they know that she is capable of anything. I can’t imagine how hard it must be to believe in yourself in a situation like Emoni’s, but hearing someone you respect tell you that must have been incredibly powerful. How many women like Emoni never had someone believe in them the way this person believes in Emoni?What drew me in even more into With the Fire On High were the short chapters. I personally find that shorter chapters tend to make the flow of a story better because it isn’t cluttered down by chapter fillers. It also made it easier for when I was reading on the go. I could pick the book up, read a two-page chapter, and continue on my way. The only downside to this is that there were instances where the story felt almost episodic–each chapter a different instance in Emoni’s life, especially at the end. Emoni herself is a very complex character who always put her daughter first and acted her age while still maintaining that level of adulthood needed when someone else becomes dependent on you. I liked the fact that Emoni is understandably careful around the people she lets in, but doesn’t let the drama affect her relationship with her daughter. This was especially evident when Babygirl, her daughter’s nickname, and her father’s family came into the story.Some of the side characters were also fun and I loved seeing the representation in this novel. Emoni’s best friend is a rock for her and I was grateful that I didn’t have to read another story about best friends who break up as a means of furthering the plot. What I also liked about the side characters is that some of them had some great character growth, while remaining true to their core being. For example, someone who is a bitch at the beginning didn’t magically become an angel just because the protagonist and her finally understand each other. A lot happens in this book, which felt fun but also at times overwhelming. I could tell that Acevedo is a poet because though her novel is written in prose, the way that events are introduced and even the short chapters felt segmented like a poetic stanza. Everything adds up to a whole, but events are all grouped into different events within the story. This again reminds me of my earlier comment of this book sometimes feeling episodic. One of my only other complaints about this book was how easily everything was concluded. I kept waiting for certain events to happen–to the point where my anxiety was starting to freak me out–because they were alluded to in the book, but they never happened. Everything just got tidied up really well and while the romantic in me is happy for Emoni and for the way everything concluded, I wish there had been a better arc for us getting to that conclusion.Overall, I would strongly recommend this book. It was fun, heartfelt, and it was sweet watching Emoni become the woman she’s meant to be. Also, her relationship with her abuela and her daughter is the cutest thing ever. Plus, who wouldn’t want that piece of art of a cover on their bookshelf?Happy reading!
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  • ✩ Ashley ✩
    January 1, 1970
    Okay I’m calling it: ♡ BEST DAMN COVER OF 2019! ♡*Loving it!!*
  • Clara
    January 1, 1970
    11/02/19A new book by Elizabeth Acevedo? SIGNED ME IN.
  • Cassandra {semi-hiatus}
    January 1, 1970
    Everything written by Elizabeth Acevedo has that extra something that makes it a once in a lifetime read while also encompassing some deeper level of human emotion that most authors barely brush.Even following up the wonders of The Poet X, this does not disappoint.
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  • Dana Al-Basha دانة الباشا
    January 1, 1970
    A story about food and ambition? Sign me in! Did you see this GORGEOUS cover?! I'm in love! Acevedo is becoming one of my favorites as an author and a narrator!
  • Merline
    January 1, 1970
    ARC provided by the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest reviewBefore I get into this review can we take a moment to appreciate the amazingness that is this cover? Emoni with her hair in that scarf, the hoop earrings, that eyeliner, and those perfectly arched eyebrows? I wonder if she gets them waxed or threaded. And then they added the fruit around her like this cover wasn't already the bomb.com? Basically, the cover is breathtaking and I love the island vibes. Whoever designed ARC provided by the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest reviewBefore I get into this review can we take a moment to appreciate the amazingness that is this cover? Emoni with her hair in that scarf, the hoop earrings, that eyeliner, and those perfectly arched eyebrows? I wonder if she gets them waxed or threaded. And then they added the fruit around her like this cover wasn't already the bomb.com? Basically, the cover is breathtaking and I love the island vibes. Whoever designed it deserves a raise.Now that I've gotten that out of my system, let's talk about the book.The Poet X was one of my favorite books last year so I honestly couldn’t wait to read Elizabeth Acevedo’s newest release. I was so ecstatic when I saw it on Edelweiss and even more excited when I got approved for the ARC.With the Fire on High is a beautiful coming-of-age tale about 17-year old Emoni, an Afro-Puerto Rican teen who is both a mother and an amazing cook (I'm a little envious). We follow her in her senior year of high school as she tackles motherhood, high school, family, co-parenting, and more. She's surrounded by an amazing support system, which includes her abuela, her best friend, a few teachers and other characters we meet along the way. "The world is a turntable that never stops spinning; as humans we merely choose the tracks we want to sit out and the ones that inspire us to dance." 🌻 The characters. I loved the characters and the familial relationships. Emoni is authentic and introspective. When we meet her at the beginning of the book, she's kind of reserved and a little closed off emotionally, but she opens up as the story develops. I adored her relationship with her abuela and her best friend, Angelica. They're really supportive of her and challenge her at the same time. Although this story is about Emoni, the side characters are also amazing and three dimensional. Abuela has her own feelings about raising her granddaughter and great-granddaughter. Angelica isn't just a queer PoC character. She's super talented and has aspirations. Malachi isn't just the new kid in school. And Emoni's father, Julio, is complicated.✍🏽 Writing. Elizabeth Acevedo’s writing is wonderful and organic. The characters feel real and are easy to identify with because of that. I loved the way we saw abuela reciprocate the same love and attention Emoni gives her daughter, Emma, towards Emoni. I loved the way the writing challenges racial identity and the queer POC representation. I also loved the way the writing captures Emoni's complicated relationship with her father.👶🏾 Co-parenting. This was so important to show two black teen parents co-parenting. Elizabeth Acevedo could’ve gone in any direction, but she chose to write healthy co-parenting and a black father who is actively involved in his child’s life. I’m happy she made the decision to show that instead of a toxic baby mama/baby daddy relationship.❤️ The romance. This is probably an unpopular opinion but I liked the romance. Sure it was kind of insta-lovey and I think the book would've still worked without it, but it showed that POC girls can find love regardless of their circumstances. Emoni had every reason to be closed off to relationships, but she found someone who was patient and kind and I think that was important. I'm always here for black girls being happy in healthy loving relationships.🍊 The recipes and food. I loved the delicious little recipes throughout the book and I couldn't stop wondering: "Are these real? Can I try them at home?" It was a very nice touch. I also loved that Emoni's cooking evoked visceral feelings from people. Very unique. I wish I enjoyed cooking as much as Emoni.While I thoroughly enjoyed this book, there are just a few things that didn't work for me:• The nonlinear story. The beginning of the book felt like a collection of stories instead of a novel. That was unexpected and took a little getting used to, but it changes.• The abrupt ending. The ending felt a little rushed.Overall, I’m happy this book exists. I wish it existed when I was growing up because I was raised by my grandmother and had a similar relationship with my father so teenage-Merline would've liked this. Also, my mom had me when she was 16 and I know so many other people who had babies in high school. Their experience as a teen parent isn't similar to Emoni, but this coming-of-age story and representation is important. Highly recommend this to everyone!Blog // Instagram // Twitter // Tumblr
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  • Dylan
    January 1, 1970
    3 stars.With the chapters being very short and the book being short overall, there wasn't a lot of development on any of the plotlines and the romance felt very rushed.Overall though, I did really appreciate that the main character is a teen mom, and she is definitely the best part of the novel. I just wish it were longer so I'd actually care about everything else going on.
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  • Fanna
    January 1, 1970
    || YA Coming of Age Contemporary || Diverse and Sexual representation|| High School Senior loves cooking and cooking and cooking LIST & POSTS I'VE MENTIONED THIS BOOK IN:May 2019 - Ten Books To Look Out For This MonthSuper excited to read this as part of a blog tour! Thank you, Karina, Elizabeth Acevedo, and Harper Teen!
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  • Renata
    January 1, 1970
    oh my gosh, YES. I loved The Poet X so much, I was a little worried about what could possibly follow that up...but this was just as amazing. Such a moving story about food and family and making your own path! (plus also: recipes)
  • Shanah
    January 1, 1970
    For this review and many others, please visit - https://bionicbookwormblog.wordpress.comWow! This book blew me away! As soon as I heard what it was about, I knew that this was going to be a book that I loved. A young mother finds a connection with cooking and tries to find a way to make her dream come true. I LOVE cooking! Always have. It’s always been a big part of my life and has been what brought our family together. But I didn’t expect to relate to this book as much as I did.Emoni was such a For this review and many others, please visit - https://bionicbookwormblog.wordpress.comWow! This book blew me away! As soon as I heard what it was about, I knew that this was going to be a book that I loved. A young mother finds a connection with cooking and tries to find a way to make her dream come true. I LOVE cooking! Always have. It’s always been a big part of my life and has been what brought our family together. But I didn’t expect to relate to this book as much as I did.Emoni was such a great character! She hasn’t had it easy; she was raised by her grandmother after her mothers death and her father left. She then had her daughter when she was a freshman in high school. She’s all of a sudden responsible for the life of another at a time where she’s supposed to be figuring out who she is and what she wants. But, Emoni knows what she wants in life and she isn’t afraid to take the steps to get it. But, being determined as she is, she isn’t selfish. In fact, every decision that she makes, she first considers those she loves and finds a way that will include and work for everyone. She’s not fearless, but she finds a way to use her fears as motivation to move forward and accomplish the impossible. I absolutely LOVED that about her! I also loved that she was willing to put in the work, even when it threatened to drown her. She would be so exhausted by all the things she was taking under her wing, but she pushed through and always worked to the best of her abilities.It was her passion for food and her journey to find herself that I most related to. I’ve always loved cooking! And all the shows that she was obsessed with were shows that I’ve seen every episode of. She would take a recipe and always tweak it to what she thinks could bring it to the next level….. so me! And, I was also young when I had my daughter. Not quite a freshman though. It was less than 2 months after I turned 23. I had just finished college and was working to save money for a house with my then Fiancee. I still had no clue where I was going to end up or what I wanted to be. So I absolutely related to this story of trying to find yourself while also being a mother and thinking of your child’s future as well. Suddenly you find yourself willing to make sacrifices so that you can make a jump start for your kid. Not that I think I made sacrifices…. we made decisions for our family, and i’m thankful for every moment.This story was VERY empowering. Emoni was so strong and full of passion. She handled things in such a great way! And the family and friendship elements to this story were so heartwarming. Friends and family always being a point of love and support, no matter the situation. They had conversations about things that were bothering them, and worked together to come to a conclusion.Lastly I want to mention the writing. I’ve heard so much about Elizabeth Acevedo and now I can understand the hype. She writes with such passion and emotion! You easily find you heart completely immersed in the story and characters and didn’t even realize it was happening. Her words are so effective and powerful and I absolutely LOVED her writing style! This is the type of book that you will feel in your heart and not want to stop reading. Here is an example (Please keep in mind that I was reading this from an advanced copy and the following quote may be different or absent in the final copy)The world is a turntable that never stops spinning; as humans we merely choose the tracks we want to sit out and the ones that inspire us to dance.The chapters are also really short which I loved. I would tell myself “just one more chapter” for about 15 chapters before I would finally stop….. it was so addicting!I’m not usually the biggest fan of YA contemporary, but this one was extremely well done! It hit me in all the emotions, grabbed my heart and attention, and I will definitely be reading more from her! I absolutely loved this! Thank you so much to Harper Teen (HCC Frenzy) for the chance to read this in exchange for an honest review. My thoughts and opinions are my own and are uninfluenced.
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  • Shealea
    January 1, 1970
    If you're a reader of diverse books and want to know what representations this book offers, find the diversity tags here.At its core, With the Fire on High is a coming-of-age journey for a teenage girl who’s had to mature more quickly than her peers and who’s had to take on more responsibility than most people her age. I think the book initiates a thoughtful discussion on what “coming of age” looks like for the youth whose circumstances have pushed them into acting like adults at an early age, a If you're a reader of diverse books and want to know what representations this book offers, find the diversity tags here.At its core, With the Fire on High is a coming-of-age journey for a teenage girl who’s had to mature more quickly than her peers and who’s had to take on more responsibility than most people her age. I think the book initiates a thoughtful discussion on what “coming of age” looks like for the youth whose circumstances have pushed them into acting like adults at an early age, and in my opinion, this is a discussion that is sorely needed in Young Adult literature.However, it is worth recognizing that With the Fire on High unapologetically delves into issues outside of Emoni’s personal life. As a main character, Emoni is introspective and thoughtful. Through her perspective, Acevedo raises powerful points regarding gentrification, education as a luxury and as a privilege, racism and microaggressions, colonialism, and sex positivity among the youth.Strongly written characters, an intersection of identities, cultures, and histories, a taboo subject matter discussed with sensitivity, snippets of creative recipes, phenomenal storytelling, and an extremely satisfying ending — With the Fire on High has all the necessary ingredients (with just the right pinch of magical cinnamon dust) for a quick page-turner that readers will immediately eat up and fall in love with. This one’s absolutely riveting. Please send my compliments to the chef.I received a physical ARC of With the Fire on High as part of my participation in a blog tour organized by Afire Pages. This does not affect my review.Content/Trigger warnings:(view spoiler)[Mentions of premarital sex; early teenage pregnancy; brief mention of abortion; slut-shaming and racism (both challenged) (hide spoiler)]5 stars* Read the rest of this review in my natural habitat>
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